Scranton campus Blood Drive to include free COVID antibody testing

Josh McAuliffe
September 14, 2020

DUNMORE, Pa. – Penn State Scranton will once again partner with the Northeastern Pennsylvania chapter of the American Red Cross for a campus Blood Drive scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 17.

From 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. that day, the Red Cross’ Bloodmobile will be parked in the visitors parking area near the Study Learning Center. In order to maintain social distancing guidelines, donors will be required to make an appointment and wear a mask.

In addition to giving blood, donors will also be provided with free antibody testing to determine if they’ve potentially been exposed to COVID-19.

Given the effects of the virus, now is a particularly important time to donate blood, said campus Health Services Nurse Jill Thoman.

“There is an increased need for blood donations given the current situation, and a lot of places that normally have blood drives have been closed,” Thoman said. “With the offering of COVID antibody screening, if a person has antibodies from a previous exposure, they may be able to help patients who are severely affected by COVID-19 by donating plasma.”

To register, visit and use the sponsor code “PSU Scranton.”

According to Thoman, other precautionary measures will be in place at the blood drive, including donors being required to fill out a questionnaire and have their temperature checked prior to going into the Bloodmobile.

Also, there will only be one appointment per time period, while a maximum of one patient will be allowed in the Bloodmobile at one time. The vehicle will be disinfected between every donation.

As far as the antibody tests go, donors will be able to get their results within seven to 10 days on the Red Cross’ Blood Donor app or through the online portal.

While the campus isn’t as busy as it usually is under normal circumstances, Thoman is hoping for a good turnout and has set a goal of 27 donors for this month's blood drive.

“I have six appointments made already, and it’s a mix of students, faculty and alumni so far,” she said. “I’m hoping for the best.”

For more information on the Blood Drive, contact Thoman at 570-963-2681 or

Last Updated September 21, 2020